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Posts tagged ‘NRA’

NRA Joins Lawsuit Over Snowden Phone Data.


In a continuing effort to protect the privacy interests of gun owners, the National Rifle Association filed a brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit on Friday in the National Security Agency spying case.

The brief  supports the American Civil Liberties Union’s request for reversal of a decision by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York that deemed lawful all of the domestic telephone data gathered by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

In December, U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley III issued a 53-page decision that upheld that the NSA’s data collection program, which accumulates virtually all Americans’ phone records, did not violate the Fourth Amendment prohibition against unlawful search and seizure.

In its friend of the court brief, the NRA continued to argue that NSA data collection violates freedom of association protection guaranteed under the First Amendment.

“The mass surveillance program could allow identification of NRA members, supporters, potential members, and other persons with whom the NRA communicates, potentially chilling their willingness to communicate with the NRA,” the brief states.

In his original ruling, Pauley found that the claimed chilling effect of the NSA programs was too speculative to be deemed a substantial intrusion on First Amendment rights.

“There is no evidence that the Government has used any of the bulk [telephone] metadata it collected for any purpose other than investigating and disrupting terrorist attacks,” he wrote.

The NRA’s second point of contention centers on its belief that the data collection programs could undermine the privacy protection of gun owners. Current federal law prohibits the creation of a registry of firearms or firearm owners.

According to the NRA, the government maintains that its surveillance program collects only metadata, and the content of communications remains private.

The NRA counters that argument with a recent study in which two graduate students at Stanford University collected telephone metadata on volunteers over a few months and discovered exactly how much private information they were able to glean.

“We found that phone metadata is unambiguously sensitive, even in a small population and over a short time window,” Jonathan Mayer and Patrick Mutchler wrote in their study.  “We were able to infer medical conditions, firearm ownership, and more, using solely phone metadata.”

On the specific issue of firearm ownership, the authors of the study determined that one of the volunteers likely was interested in firearms and specifically in AR-15 pattern rifles. The volunteer later confirmed that information to be true.

“This type of information is particularly sensitive at a time when some government officials at both the state and federal levels are showing increasing hostility toward individual gun ownership, and when interest in a particular type of firearm may bring an individual under close governmental scrutiny because of that firearm’s disfavored status,” the NRA wrote in a statement.

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© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
By Joe Battaglia

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34 Questions On The Sandy Hook School Shooting That Have Never Been Answered (VIDEO).


Regardless of how you view the Sandy Hook Newtown school shooting, it has raised multiple questions that have never received satisfactory answers, such as:

  1. Why were no “Life-Flight” or “Life-Star” helicopters called in to assist victims at Sandy Hook?
  2. Why were paramedics and EMTs denied access to victims?
  3. Why did the medical examiner not allow families to see the bodies of their dead children?
  4. Why was such an effort made to tie both Adam and Nancy Lanza to the Sandy Hook school, when later it was found that those reports were false?
  5. The school nurse claims to have heard 5 shots. How would 5 shots result in over 20 dead bodies?
  6. Why was the Newtown school completely destroyed with no trace of it remaining? They didn’t tear down the school in Columbine, Colorado.

34 Questions On Sandy Hook Shooting That Have Never Been Answered from Now The End Begins onVimeo.

…and the list goes on and on. We invite you to watch this video and simply attempt to answer these 34 questions yourself using only available facts, common sense and logic. But we promise you, that if you simply watch the video all the to the end, you will absolutely come to the conclusion that whatever actually happened at the Sandy Hook School, it is not what we have been lead to believe.

Why Is This ‘Grieving Dad’ Smiling And Laughing Before His Obviously Fake Performance? from Now The End Begins on Vimeo.

And what about “greiving dad” Robbie Parker? When he thought the cameras were not rolling, he is seen laughing and joking like he doesn’t have a care in the world. When he starts to talk, he gives the most pathetically-bad display of horrible acting, with all the fake crying you can stand to watch. Click and see for yourself.

by NTEB News Desk

Priebus Delays RNC Winter Meeting for March for Life.


Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus plans to delay the start of the group’s annual meeting so he and other RNC members can join the thousands of abortion opponents in this year’s March for Life in Washington.

The annual march is held on Jan. 22, the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, reports The Washington Times.

“I saw that there was a real interest among a significant portion of our members to attend and support the Rally for Life,” Priebus said. “This is a core principle of our party. It was natural for me to support our members and our principles.”

This marks the first time a major U.S. political party has delayed its annual meeting, said state GOP chairmen and other RNC members. About 650,000 people attended last year’s march, where House Speaker John Boehner was one of the keynote speakers.

In addition to delaying the meeting, Priebus said the RNC will charter a bus for those among the RNC’s 168 members who want to attend the march.

Alaska RNC member Debbie Joslin, in an email with other members, noted that she has not known of another RNC chairman to delay the meeting start or make an opportunity for members to attend the Rally for Life.

“They always scheduled critical meetings for the same time as the March for Life,” she said. “Big thanks to Reince for standing up for the unborn!”

According to Oklahoma RNC member Carolyn McLarty, the schedule change started during an email reminder about the march from another RNC member, Kathy Hayden of Virginia, who suggested members “could attend at least part of it” before the meetings started. Priebus decided to delay the meeting after hearing about 20 members planned to share the cost of a bus to go to the rally.

Oregon RNC member Solomon Yue said the does not think donors will complain too loudly about the party chartering a bus for members to go to the rally, out of fear of being “viewed as petty.”

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
By Sandy Fitzgerald

Gun Groups Wary of Obama’s New Firearms Initiative: ‘Devil’s in the Details’.


Image: Gun Groups Wary of Obama's New Firearms Initiative: 'Devil's in the Details'

By Todd Beamon

Gun-rights advocates responded broadly to President Obama’s measures aimed at keeping firearms away from the mentally ill, with many conveying a general mistrust of the administration on gun issues and cautioning that “the devil’s in the details” of the newest proposals.

“Nobody, including gun owners, wants anyone with a severe mental illness to be able to get a gun,” Dave Dalton, founder of the American Gun Owners Alliance, told Newsmax. “And all the shootings we’ve seen over the last year have been by someone who has been mentally unstable.

“But the fact of the matter is, they’re addressing something in a way that makes gun owners nervous — and the devil’s going to be in the details.”

“We really have a problem with what they’re doing and the way they’re doing it,” said Jeff Knox, director of the Firearms Coalition. “Congress has looked at this issue and has rejected action on this issue.

“When Congress looks at something and says ‘no’, that’s not traditionally a green light for the White House to go and do it on their own.

“That’s an overreach on the part of the executive — and if we had a Congress and a system that was functioning properly, they would slap him down for this and they would refuse to allow this to happen,” Knox said.

Under the measures announced by the White House, the Justice Department will propose changes to the federal background check system to clarify who under U.S. law is prohibited from possessing a firearm because of mental health problems.

The Department of Health and Human Services also will propose a regulation aimed at making it easier for states to submit information about the mentally ill to the federal system, without blocking all people who seek mental health treatment from owning guns.

“The administration is committed to making sure that anyone who may pose a danger to themselves or others does not have access to a gun,” the White House said in a statement. “The federal background check system is the most effective way to assure that such individuals are not able to purchase a firearm from a licensed gun dealer.”

Unable to win passage of gun-control legislation after mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school in December 2012, President Barack Obama said last year that he would begin using executive authority to tighten firearms regulation.

Many of the groups reached by Newsmax participated in the White House’s three-day summit last January on ways to stem gun violence in wake of the Newtown shootings headed by Vice President Joe Biden. The National Rifle Association characterized the session as an attack on Second Amendment rights.

The NRA declined to comment Friday on the latest proposals — saying that it needed time to review them — but the other guns groups charged that the plans would adversely affect legitimate gun owners.

“There’s a reason we hate the ATF,” Knox said, referring to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The agency is under the Justice Department and operates the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).

“They’ve earned our animosity. They came after us over and over again. There’s a reason we can’t be reasonable about gun-control laws and regulations.

“Every time they promulgate a new law or a new regulation, they try and make it sound like it’s about keeping bad guys and crazy people away from guns, but the way it’s enforced is always they come after us — the regular gun owners, because we’re the easy targets.

“It’s really difficult to find bad guys and crazy people and catch them in the act,” Knox added. “It’s really easy to find me — to comb through my files, my gun safe, my paperwork — and find some error that I’ve made and hang me out to dry because of it.

“They’re using these laws to attack us, not go after bad guys, and that’s the big problem.”

Richard Feldman, president of the Independent Firearm Owners Association, noted how the White House described the proposals as “common-sense solutions.”

“If it was so common sensible, we would have done this years ago,” he told Newsmax. “It may sound like common sense on the surface, but as you get down into the issue, it becomes far more difficult.

“It’s really a balancing question between very substantial constitutional freedoms and the rights and responsibilities of not just the individual but of society and the mentally ill.

“I no longer give the benefit of the doubt to the government — and that’s true when it comes to gun rights,” he added. “It’s true when it comes to censorship. My orientation has changed a bit.”

The NCIS system was bitterly attacked, with the advocates saying that it lacked critical information on the mentally ill because Justice had not provided the states the money to report it.

In 2007, Congress approved legislation providing Justice with $30.1 million to give to the states. So far, only about 5.3 percent of that has been paid out.

In fact, the paltry funding was derided by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’sMayors Against Illegal Guns after the 2011 shootings in Tucson, Ariz. Six people died in the shooting and 13 others were wounded, including Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

“You’ve got executive orders coming out to address a problem, when a law that was passed seven years ago hasn’t even been funded yet,” Dalton, of the American Gun Owners Alliance, told Newsmax. “If that law had been fully funded in 2008, would we have had the kind of problems with mental health shooters today?

“We don’t know, but it sure as heck may have stopped a few of them.

“Instead of funding something that everybody agreed on, we’re going to tack more executive orders on top of it. That’s the kind of stuff that aggravates gun owners.”

In addition, Justice would also clarify the legal term “committed to a mental institution” to include patients who have been committed by a court to both inpatient and outpatient facilities.

That proposal, the gun groups charge, could strip someone of their right to bear arms for the rest of their lives based upon a singular crisis that might have occurred early in someone’s past.

“A lot of people go through crisis in their lives — and some people go through extreme measures,” Dalton said. “If you have one problem in your life, and you learn to deal with it, and you get over it, should that mean that your Second Amendment right is stripped from you forever? That’s what gun owners are afraid of.

“The one thing gun owners are going to want to see in these regulations is there a way that you can apply to get yourself off the list?” he asked. “It’s these open-ended executive orders that just aggravate gun owners and gun-rights advocates.

“You can’t crucify somebody for their whole life for something they did one time because of special circumstances.”

The new regulations have to be clear here to be effective, Cedric Alexander, police chief of DeKalb County, Ga., told Newsmax.

In August, Michael Brandon Hill, 20, opened fire at an elementary school in the county outside Atlanta with an AK-47 before being talked into surrendering his weapon by a school bookkeeper. None of the 800 students was injured.

Hill admitted to being off his medication for a mental disorder.

“Defining that to a very fine point is going to be very difficult,” said Alexander, who has worked with Feldman’s organization on gun issues. “Just because someone has a mental health issue — maybe they’ve had one that’s longstanding — and they are managing it well, you still have to separate those folks out from those who have a history of doing real harm to themselves or others.

“It’s a step in the right direction,” he said of the White House proposals. “It opens up further discussion, but it’s not going to be an exact science — because people are more complicated than that.”

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 

Survey: Virginians Back NRA, Except in D.C. Metro Area.


Most Virginians view the National Rifle Association favorably, according to a poll conducted for the gun lobby. But the opinions are radically different in the various parts of the state holding the only competitive gubernatorial race this year.

The poll of 800 voters likely to cast ballots in the upcoming race between Republican Ken Cuccinelli and Democrat Terry McAuliffe shows that overall, 30 percent “strongly favor” and 21 percent “somewhat favor” the NRA’s agenda, reports Politico.

McAuliffe and Cuccinelli have widely differing views on the gun issue, with Cuccinelli often touting his “A” rating from the NRA and McAuliffe speaking out against the NRA and in favor of gun control legislation.

The political action committee of the National Rifle Association has spent $466,000 on television and Internet ads highlighting McAuliffe-backed gun control measures, reports Roll Call.

Though Virginians generally favor the NRA, the poll shows a significant divide according to region, and in Northern Virginia — the Washington D.C. media market — the NRA survey showed that 46 percent of voters do not favor the NRA, while 43 percent do.

New York City Mayaor Michael Bloomberg‘s PAC has earmarked $1.1 million for attack ads that link Cuccinelli to the NRA. But they will only air in the D.C. area, not elsewhere in the state, where NRA support runs high.

On Saturday, during a forum in Richmond, McAuliffe mentioned his opposition to the NRA, saying he supports an assault weapons ban and expanding background checks.

Cuccinelli said he  opposes background checks at gun shows. “No one has ever brought in a single crime that would have been stopped in Virginia based on closing this so-called loophole,” said Cuccinelli.

The survey was performed by Republican pollsters InMessage.

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Polls show McAuliffe with Solid Lead in Va. Gov. Race

Super PAC Pitching Anti-McAuliffe Ad During World Series

 

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By Sandy Fitzgerald

Kerry Signs UN Arms Trade Treaty, Says Won’t Harm US Rights.


The United States signed a U.N. Arms Trade Treaty regulating the $70 billion global trade in conventional arms on Wednesday, and the Obama administration sought to allay fears of the powerful U.S. gun lobby, which says the pact would violate the constitutional rights of Americans.

The treaty, which relates only to cross-border trade and aims to keep weapons out of the hands of human-rights abusers and criminals, still requires ratification by the U.S. Senate, and has been attacked by the influential gun rights group the National Rifle Association.

Among the NRA’s arguments against the treaty are that it undermines U.S. sovereignty and that it disregards the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees citizens the right to bear arms.

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The United States, the world’s No. 1 arms exporter, became the 91st country to sign when Secretary of State John Kerry put pen to paper on the sidelines of the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations.

“It’s significant that the United States, which accounts for about 80 percent of the world’s export in arms, has signed,” Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop told a news conference.

Another 16 nations signed on Wednesday, raising the total to 107, and two more countries ratified the treaty, raising that number to six, Bishop said. Fifty countries need to ratify the treaty for it to enter into force.

“This treaty will not diminish anyone’s freedom. In fact, the treaty recognizes the freedom of both individuals and states to obtain, possess and use arms for legitimate purposes,” Kerry said after signing it.

“Make no mistake, we would never think about supporting a treaty that is inconsistent with the rights of Americans, the rights of American citizens to be able to exercise their guaranteed rights under our constitution,” he said.

Arms control activists and rights groups say one person dies every minute as a result of armed violence, and that the treaty is needed to halt the uncontrolled flow of arms and ammunition that they say fuels wars, atrocities and rights abuses.

The Arms Trade Treaty aims to set standards for all cross-border transfers of conventional weapons, ranging from small firearms to tanks and attack helicopters. It would create binding requirements for states to review cross-border contracts to ensure that weapons will not be used in human-rights abuses, terrorism, violations of humanitarian law or organized crime.

The NRA vowed to oppose ratification in the Senate, calling the treaty a threat to individual firearm ownership.

“These are blatant attacks on the constitutional rights and liberties of every law-abiding American. The NRA will continue to fight this assault on our fundamental freedom,” said Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action.

The U.N. Office for Disarmament Affairs says the treaty does not “interfere with the domestic arms trade and the way a country regulates civilian possession.”

The 193-nation U.N. General Assembly approved the treaty on April 2 by a vote of 154-3. Russia, China, India and 20 other countries abstained.

Rights group Amnesty International USA said it hoped the decision by the United States to sign the treaty would send a signal to Moscow, Beijing and the NRA on the commitment of President Barack Obama’s administration to the issue.

“The Obama administration is politically committed to ending the unscrupulous trade in deadly weapons used by dictators, war lords and criminal gangs to commit atrocities,” said Amnesty International USA deputy executive director, Frank Jannuzi.

Aid group Oxfam welcomed the U.S. signing and called on Washington to live up to the spirit of the treaty by not transferring weapons to countries where there is a risk of rights abuses, such as in the Syrian civil war.

The White House pledged in June to provide military aid to rebels in Syria. The Syrian Coalition of opposition groups said this month that lethal assistance had been received from the United States.

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Kerry has said “many items” are reaching the rebels, but declined to say what military items were sent.

© 2013 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.
Source: NEWSmax.com

NRA Holding Raffle for Guns That Obama Wants to Ban.


The National Rifle Association is giving its supporters a chance to win a host of pricey firearms through a month-long online “banned-guns” raffle.

The group says it is raffling off “fantastic guns that Obama, Biden, Feinstein and Bloomberg want to ban.”

The guns currently are on the market, but likely would be unavailable if any of the gun-control laws proposed by lawmakers in Washington are passed.

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The NRA has held raffles before, spokesman Andrew Arulanandam told Newmax.

This was the “first time that it has been branded a ‘banned-guns raffle,’ but definitely not the first time we have given away these types of rifles,” he said.

“This is something our members look forward to,” Arulanandam said, noting that millions of people have participated in the past. “I think there are people outside of the NRA family who also will be interested.”

Arulanandam said sweepstakes and raffles are conducted on an ad hoc basis, not necessarily annually.

The raffle’s timing is challenging in the wake of last week’s mass shooting at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C. — which left 12 victims dead and has given renewed attention to the national debate over gun violence — but the event has been planned for months and is featured in the current issue of the NRA’s magazine.

Proceeds go “to support the ongoing efforts to promote gun-safety education and preserve our Second Amendment freedom and hunting heritage,” Arunlanandam said.

Among the firearms being raffled:

Entrants may register online for up to 12 raffle tickets per person, per day. A suggested contribution is $5 per ticket, although no contribution is required for entry.

Entry deadline is 11:59 p.m. Oct. 21. Contact the NRA for more information.

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By Andrea Billups

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